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The New Rossignol **Leather** Ski Boot

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
I was in the shop today and, just for kicks, stuck my foot in the new leather ski boot that Rossi is coming out with (leather in front, plastic on sides and back). I was very surprised to find that it is not the moccasin I was expecting. It felt like a full-on ski boot.

The flex was soft and would probably be sketchy at speed, but there is no sacrifice in lateral stiffness (as far as I could tell in the shop). What was most suprising was that the thing is heavy! I mean maybe even more so than the average all-plastic ski boot. Turns out there is a ton of engineering going on to make a leather-in-front boot work -- all kinds of fixtures and atypical foam inserts.

It was maybe a slight bit more comfortable then an traditional ski boot, but if it was put on your foot without you knowing what it was you would not know there was anything unique about it.

Interesting design, though.
post #2 of 18
The bootfitters I've talked to about the new soft boots say they're pretty much entry level models. The technology is still a ways off before they're for high performance skiers.
There is a market for them though. Lots of skiers will take comfort over performance.
post #3 of 18
Since those boots are reinforced with plastic in the areas where most skiers feel discomfort anyways - seems like mostly a gimmick!
post #4 of 18
The boots are actually really comfortable. They aren't a gimmic. The boot is much softer than a normal ski boot but if you're looking for comfort they're it! They are an entry level boot. I work in a shop, and this is an entry-level boot. It is geared for those who ski a couple days of year, stick to groomers, and prefer comfort to power. If you want comfort and are willing to forfeit a little performance then these are the boot for you. Matt
post #5 of 18
As a member of Ski Magazine's boot test team and Master Fit University I get the opportuntiy to ski some bizarre things as proto types. We had all get used to this new "Soft"technology.Most manufacturers are selling "Soft" boots in Europe now , and have been for awhile,and the U.S. market will see more and more of these in the years to come.
It is critical that these boots are matched with the proper ski. If the ski does not have enough side cut for full on carving-trenching the experience will be compromised. These boots are extraoridarily unsupportive forward. If you are attempting to ski these "Old School" good luck. AS long as the movement pattern is diagional life is good.

I think this boot technology combined with the proper ski will have a huge impact on ski teaching and the learning curve. It should be better as these boots have to be tipped to work.
We have a full size run of the Rossignol Soft 1 as demo at our shop at Stratton Mountain. If any one ever wants to give them the proverbial test drive we can set you up. Just mention this forum and we will take care of you.
They may not be ultra comfy to every one now in the Alpha stages but be patient they are here for awhile.
post #6 of 18
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by super-mat:
It is geared for those who ski a couple days of year, stick to groomers, and prefer comfort to power. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

so that $550 retail price makes a ton of sense.
post #7 of 18
Regarding soft boots and control; I look at Tele boots they went from leather to plastic. In part, to facilitate control. So Alpine starts a move to leather? I don't see it?!
post #8 of 18
I don't want to offend anyone who skis a few days a year, but I'm going to make a generalization. If you are included and you don't fit the generalization then disregard it, I'm not referring to you. Most city people who ski a couple of days a year and want comfort will pay $550 to look good and feel good for the few days they're on the mountain. Many people ARE willing to pay that much. Crazy, I know, but if they pay it then the ski companies charge it.
post #9 of 18
IU looked at the rossi soft-boot, because of my accident and surgery, and found I couldn't even get my foot into them.

I ended up with the saloman softboot, which I feel is a much better design and is pretty damn comfortable.
I had custom footbeds put into them yesterday, I got measured up for cants
(left foot 1 degree, fat side out)

I also have marker 8.1 SC bindings, which due to their design have a sort of built in lifting plate.

I ski a T-power cobra s, which is a mid-fat with a deep cut. I'll let y'all know how this combo works after we get some snow.
post #10 of 18
Thanks Nakona. I'm really interested in how they work for you.
post #11 of 18
I met with the Rossignol Rep last night. He totally changed my opinion of the soft boots. He explained a few things that I didn't understand and I'm actually much more impressed. They are definately softer but because of the way skis work these days it will hardly affect handling at all. They are also much warmer than standard boots. I believe this is where ski boots are going. Everybody needs to at least put one on. I was wrong about the target group. I think that beginners can definately ride them, but it is targeted for intermediate to advanced skiers, and even a few experts. Sorry for the misinformation before. Matt
post #12 of 18
What, did you think the rep was going to say "we rushed a crappy product onto the market because our competitor has a soft boot and one day we'll have it right, but for now we have to push this #$%%#@ so here are the talking points that Rossi gave us...."?
post #13 of 18
I didn't immediately believe what he had to say. In fact I didn't believe what he said at all. I believed what he showed. I also talked to three guys in my shop who have ridden them. They're all expert level skiers and they were happy with them. The rep. showed us some cuts of the boots and it just plain made sense. What I saw was enough to confince me until I get a chance to ride them.
post #14 of 18
Just a little rep bashing that's all. I deal with (food) reps trying to get me to push their crappy product all the time. Bob Barnes says that we need to have very stiff boots, although he wouldn't tell me why. Why does Rossi think we can use softer boots?
post #15 of 18
When you enter a turn you roll a ski on edge. That requires stiff sides. You DON'T want to push forward. You can go forward but not push forward. If you push a standard boot forward you overpower the tip. With the new boot you can push forward and the boot gives rather than overpowering the tip. The problem with fighting to overpower the tip may be part of the problem with people riding back on their skis. The new boots may even help people to stay more centered because you won't be fighting the ski tips. As far as side stiffness, its still there. We saw the different layers of the boot and the really hard plastic is still in there. The only difference is they took all the places where it isn't needed and they replaced it with soft material.
post #16 of 18
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by milesb:
What, did you think the rep was going to say "we rushed a crappy product onto the market because our competitor has a soft boot and one day we'll have it right, but for now we have to push this #$%%#@ so here are the talking points that Rossi gave us...."?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Remember in high school, when you'd buy a lid (and boy did I just date myself!) you'd sniff the bag, then look at the guy and say: "Is this good $#!t?"

I always thought that was a really dumb question, even when I was asking it.



<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ October 17, 2001 07:55 AM: Message edited 1 time, by nakona ]</font>
post #17 of 18
Certainly in many turns one does not need to leverage the tip or tail, and it can be counterproductive. However, leveraging is a useful tool when needed - you can make dramatic alterations in the shape of a turn by selective leveraging of the tip and/or tail of the ski during a turn. A lot of World Cup skiers would be suprised to hear that they never "need" to leverage their tips or tails! :
post #18 of 18
Nakona, I did exactly the same thing! That is so f-'in funny! .
OK, here are my thoughts on soft boots:The boots I use are only moderately stiff, and I keep them on the softest setting. Yet I have no trouble at all leveraging the shovels of my skis, even to the point of the tails being in the air. Which I think we would all agree is overpowering the skis. Now bear in mind that this is on Volants, which tend to be soft skis. But I don't see the benefits of additional leveraging ability, even on stiffer skis. I remember an article in SKIING a few years ago where a tester tried different boots with the same pair of skis to see which ones worked best. The winners were his low cuff mountaineering boots!
So maybe I'll try these new boots, as I am a soft-core skier.

<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ October 17, 2001 10:10 AM: Message edited 1 time, by milesb ]</font>
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